Tyler texted Friday, asking the best place to access the creek.
I read an op-ed last week lamenting the current state of fly fishing- mostly crowded conditions at our name-brand streams, but also social media, a dearth of angling ethics, and, to a lesser extent, the failure of The Industry and angling clubs to teach new anglers about the sport.
I’ve shared some of the same concerns, and I’m probably overprotective of some of the places I fish. I’ve bitched about crowds too, just not on the Madison, because as far as I can tell the Madison’s always been crowded, and will always be crowded, so long as anglers on social media are complaining about anglers on social media outing what has been a legendary trout stream since day dot. Guides will keep complaining about crowded Colorado rivers so long as Colorado guides keep posting invitations to come fish crowded Colorado rivers. I spent four days in Colorado this summer, catching browns on green drakes, and never saw a soul- because I didn’t go to the South Platte or the Arkansas or one of the half-dozen other fisheries everyone and his brother visits. Flyfishing is, at its heart, a solitary sport, and I completely understand the desire for solitude. But if you’re upset there’s too many people fishing a given stream…you’re one of the too many people. I can’t figure out how to fault someone for doing exactly the same thing I’m doing, without implicating myself as part of the problem.
Tyler texted Tuesday, and I had a decision to make. He’s just started fly fishing, just bought a four weight, and I can tell when we talk it’s something he’s excited to learn. He had found the stream independently, and worked it independently, and now, he was looking for a little advice. And I had to decide whether or not to make room for one more.